Not that I didn’t know that before, of course, but sadly our ability to check out the local music scene has been pretty limited by a combination of not knowing much about which bands don’t suck, and being old enough to get suspicious glances when we go out to clubs. Luckily, the block party for the Victoria Fringe Festival (about which we’ll undoubtedly be saying more soon) brought the music to us, and kicked off this evening with a pair of bands I was pleasantly surprised by.
The Blue Violets remind me a lot of an late 80s band called Concrete Blonde, combined perhaps with a folkier act in the Atlanta scene called The Ringling Sisters nobody but me remembers. :)
There’s some psych influence there, a touch of surf too, but on the whole it’s just that murky dark rock the indie kids love. Done pretty well, it should be added. Their first (eponymous) album is now available on iTunes, where you can check out samples of every song.
Following them was The Racoons (yes, one “c”), a smart modern rock outfit in the mold of The Killers, Interpol, U2, Coldplay, maybe reaching back to The Dears, etc. Very very catchy stuff. They seem well-positioned to be a Big Thing at some point. I particularly dig the very very 80s synth business. My only concern is that they may not be good-looking enough, but you know something? Of late, a lot of bands I think are composed of porn-reject types have been making it big. So maybe these guys will too.
They also have an EP out, and it’s available for sampling and/or purchase via iTunes. I’m hoping bands like this lead us out of the “emo” wasteland and back to solid rock. I was tapping my foot and bobbing my head, at least, and that’s something. Check ’em out.